Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., has temporarily stepped down as chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee as the Justice Department investigates him for what appears to be potential insider trading.
The move came a day after the FBI arrived at his home with a warrant and seized his mobile phone. Burr, whose committee has release four installments of a five-part report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, sold $1.7 million of equities in February, right before the coronavirus pandemic prompted concerns that the U.S. economy was going to crash. His brother-in-law, Gerald Fauth, also sold off stocks on the same day as Burr.
Burr is not the only lawmaker whose stock sales raised eyebrows for their suspicious timing. In March Common Cause filed complaints with the Justice Department, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Senate Ethics Committee to investigate Burr, R-N.C., Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., Sen. Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., and Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla.